Jeremy Browne MP, Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, gave our April lecture, entitled ‘British Competitiveness: Responding To The Rise Of The Emerging Powers’.
In a wide-ranging, detailed and highly informative keynote speech, Jeremy Browne described the transformations taking place in the world with the rise of the emerging powers and he warned of the UK’s need to change too‘if we are not to be left behind’.
However, he said that the UK was uniquely qualified to take advantage of the changes taking place – throughout its history, Britain had demonstrated the ability to adapt and to achieve greatness by being ‘bold, outward-looking and innovative’. Today, education and physical infrastructure were key areas requiring investment to secure a successful future, as well as space and incentives for businesses to thrive, compete and prosper. He also said that in seeking success, we should not abandon our values and our commitment to human rights and universal freedoms – these were not western values alone, as the Arab Spring had demonstrated and they would underpin our long-term security and prosperity: ‘To be on the side of personal freedom is to be on the right side of history.’
He concluded that change was not just optional, but essential: ‘Stagnation and complacency would be a recipe for decline. Only by embracing change will we be able to benefit from the rise of the Emerging Powers and secure our future prosperity.’
To read Jeremy Browne’s speech, click on (or cut and paste into your browser window) this link: http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/news/latest-news/?view=Speech&id=757173682
To listen to his speech, click here.